I am not one of these writers who is certain the writing muse visits me on a regular basis and whispers ideas in my ear, leaving me the job of simply typing these ideas up.
Instead I can clearly see what helped me start writing. I think it’s a useful exercise for all writers to do, as before long new writers will ask you what encouraged you to start writing. If I look at my life, I can point to four areas, which I believe were important.
1) I was lucky enough to be born into a family that enjoyed reading, and passed this onto me.
2) I had a decent English teacher at school, who encouraged me to keep a journal, write often and experiment.
3) I’ve had an eventful life, like most people!
4) I was lucky enough to stumble upon a great writing course, and this encouraged me to write a novel.
By far the fourth component has been the most helpful. You see I had started to write a novel on my own. Three quarters of the way through I floundered. I searched for courses that could help, only to find the cost of these courses prohibitive.
I carried on searching and found http://www.writingclasses.co.uk run by author, Marianne Wheelaghan and Publisher, Marc Pimbert. The courses, each for ten weeks range from creative writing, to poetry, writing articles for magazines and novel-writing. Each course at the time of writing this post was under £200.00 and for that each student received valuable notes with small groups run by authors. Included was the chance to network with fellow writers as well as to receive constructive, supportive criticism on work submitted each week. During the courses, we would be encouraged to carry on our learning of the craft through the use of books or further study.
I did both novel-writing courses and by the end of the second course was well on my way to finishing my new novel, The Single Feather. If a new writer asks what brought me to writing, I point out all four components but stress the importance of the fourth.
This is just a short, personal take on what brought me to write each day, and I’m sure we all have different experiences that proved to be turning points in our careers. I would love to hear what you think? What brought you to writing? Have you attended a course or are you studying now? Do get in touch it’d be lovely to hear from you!